Bachelor of Arts (BA) Degree with a Major in German Studies

Program Learning Outcomes for the BA Degree with a Major in German Studies 

Upon completing the BA degree with a major in German Studies, students will have: 

  1. Expertise in literary and film analysis and theory.
  2. Understanding of the historical and political contexts of German culture.
  3. German Studies specific oral and writing skills.
  4. German Studies specific research knowledge.

Requirements for the BA Degree with a Major in German Studies

For general university requirements, see Graduation Requirements. Students pursuing the BA degree with a major in German Studies must complete:

  • A minimum of 10 courses (30 credit hours) to satisfy major requirements.
  • A minimum of 120 credit hours to satisfy degree requirements.
  • A minimum of 8 courses (24 credit hours) taken at the 300-level or above.
  • A maximum of 4 courses (12 credit hours) from study abroad or transfer credit. For additional departmental guidelines regarding transfer credit, see the Policies tab.

German Studies at Rice is a research-centered and undergraduate-focused program with internationally renowned faculty. Courses are offered in both German and English. The program covers German history, literature, and culture, from the seventeenth century to the present, with a strong emphasis on Germany’s role in a wider European and transatlantic context. Particular departmental strengths are in the areas of modern intellectual history, 18th- to 20th-century literature and philosophy, film and media studies, as well as political theory. The close connection between research and teaching lies at the core of the curriculum. For more information please see the Modern and Classical Literatures and Cultures website: https://cultures.rice.edu.

The courses listed below satisfy the requirements for this major. In certain instances, courses not on this official list may be substituted upon approval of the major’s academic advisor, or where applicable, the department's Director of Undergraduate Studies. (Course substitutions must be formally applied and entered into Degree Works by the major's Official Certifier.) Students and their academic advisors should identify and clearly document the courses to be taken.

Summary

Total Credit Hours Required for Major in German Studies30
Total Credit Hours Required for the BA Degree with a Major in German Studies120

Degree Requirements

Core Requirements 1
GERM 263SECOND YEAR GERMAN I 13
GERM 264SECOND YEAR GERMAN II 13
GERM 301THIRD YEAR GERMAN I 23
GERM 302THIRD YEAR GERMAN II 23
Elective Requirements
Select 6 elective courses from departmental (GERM) course offerings 318
Total Credit Hours Required for the Major in German Studies30
Additional Credit Hours to Complete Degree Requirements *59
University Graduation Requirements *31
Total Credit Hours120

Footnotes and Additional Information 

Courses Offered in English

GERM 322 / HUMA 322MARX, FREUD, EINSTEIN: FOREBEARERS OF MODERNITY3
GERM 324 / HUMA 324BERLIN: RESIDENCE, METROPOLIS, CAPITAL3
GERM 325 / HUMA 325MODERN GERMAN WRITERS: KAFKA3
GERM 326 / HUMA 372THE GERMAN FAIRY TALE: OLD AND NEW3
GERM 328 / HUMA 328GERMAN ADAPTATIONS: TEXT TO FILM3
GERM 329 / HUMA 329LITERATURE OF THE HOLOCAUST AND EXILE3
GERM 330LITERATURE AND FILM IN EAST GERMANY: BEHIND THE IRON CURTAIN3
GERM 334NATIONALISM AND CITIZENSHIP3
GERM 338 / HUMA 373 / SWGS 361NEW GERMAN FILM: HITLER'S CINEMATIC CHILDREN3
GERM 339 / HART 398FROM EXPRESSIONISM TO FASCISM: ART AND FILM IN GERMANY3
GERM 340 / HUMA 340WALTER BENJAMIN: AESTHETICS, HISTORY AND POLITICS3
GERM 345FROM DEMOCRACY TO DICTATORSHIP: GERMAN HISTORY, 1890-19453
GERM 349GERMAN POLITICAL THOUGHT3
GERM 351 / HART 387HOLOCAUST MEMORY IN MODERN GERMANY3-4
GERM 352POLITICS OF THE FLESH IN GERMAN LITERATURE, THOUGHT AND FILM3

Policies for the BA Degree with a Major in German Studies 

Enrollment

Students who arrive at Rice with AP credit in German of 4 or 5, or who have passed the International Baccalaureate with a 6 or 7 in German, should enroll in any course at the 300-level or 400-level. All other students should take the placement exam administered by the Center for Languages and Intercultural Communication (CLIC) and will be assigned to courses at the appropriate level. Any 200-level course in German can be replaced by a higher-level course.

Program Restrictions and Exclusions

Students pursuing the major in German Studies should be aware of the following program restriction:

Transfer Credit 

For Rice University’s policy regarding transfer credit, see Transfer Credit. Some departments and programs have additional restrictions on transfer credit. The Office of Academic Advising maintains the university’s official list of transfer credit advisors on their website: https://oaa.rice.edu. Students are encouraged to meet with their academic program’s transfer credit advisor when considering transfer credit possibilities. 

Departmental Transfer Credit Guidelines

Students pursuing the major in German Studies should be aware of the following departmental transfer credit guidelines:

  • No more than 4 courses (12 credit hours) of transfer credit from U.S. or international universities of similar standing as Rice may apply towards the major.
  • Requests for transfer credit will be considered by the program director (and/or the program’s official transfer credit advisor) on an individual case-by-case basis.

Distribution Credit Information

The determination of distribution credit eligibility is done initially as part of the new course creation process. Additionally, as part of an annual roll call coordinated each Spring by the Office of the Registrar, course distribution credit eligibility is routinely reviewed and reaffirmed by the Dean’s Offices of each of the academic schools.  

Faculty and leadership in the academic schools are responsible for ensuring that the courses identified as distribution-credit-eligible meet the criteria as set in the General Announcements. Students are responsible for ensuring that they meet graduation requirements by completing coursework designated as distribution-credit-eligible at the time of course registration. 

Distribution courses from the Department of Modern and Classical Literatures and Cultures are broad in theme and scope and provide students with a substantial inquiry into literature, art, media, history, thought, and/or politics, including specific national traditions, linguistic contexts, and historical periods. Such courses involve a broad and often interdisciplinary spectrum of knowledge, providing students with the tools for thinking critically about the formation of modern culture, its colonial past, and its national and linguistic traditions from antiquity to the present.

Additional Information 

For additional information, please see the Modern and Classical Literatures and Cultures website: https://cultures.rice.edu

Opportunities for the BA Degree with a Major in German Studies 

Academic Honors

The university recognizes academic excellence achieved over an undergraduate’s academic history at Rice. For information on university honors, please see Latin Honors (summa cum laude, magna cum laude, and cum laude) and Distinction in Research and Creative Work. Some departments have department-specific Honors awards or designations.

Honors Program

German Studies offers an honors program for majors excelling in their studies. Honors work consists of two semesters of independent research under faculty supervision on a topic proposed by the student leading to a substantial essay (GERM 493 in fall, GERM 494 in spring).  Outstanding seniors are presented annually with the Max Freund Prize.

The Leipzig Summer Program

The Department of German Studies strongly encourages intermediate-level students of German to attend an eight-week, intensive language course at the University of Leipzig's renowned Herder Institute. For the Rice student majoring in German Studies, this Leipzig course can be used to replace the sequence GERM 263 and GERM 264 or the sequence GERM 301 and GERM 302, and it will count as two courses (and 6 semester credit hours) of transfer credit. Through several generous endowments, the department offers the Leipzig Fellowships that can be used for travel, housing, and tuition expenses in Leipzig.

Details about the Leipzig Summer Program, including information about housing, can be found at https://ces.rice.edu/ and https://www.interdaf.uni-leipzig.de/. Students must apply directly to Leipzig-interDaF for course admission. For further information, contact the Program Advisor for German Studies, Astrid Oesmann, astrid.oesmann@rice.edu

Additional Information 

For additional information, please see the Modern and Classical Literatures and Cultures website: https://cultures.rice.edu

See https://humanities.rice.edu/student-life for tables of fellowships, prizes, and internships/practica that may be relevant to this major.